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Chapter 7 Bankruptcy: What Property Can I Keep?

Most people never imagine they will find themselves in a position where they are forced to consider debt relief options such as bankruptcy. However, a sudden injury, pay cut, lay off or divorce can cause your financial stability to crumble. Before you know it, you are faced with default notices on your monthly bills and mortgage, you are being harassed by creditors and you are at risk of losing your home in foreclosure. Bankruptcy could provide the necessary debt relief to help you get back on your feet.

At Platt & Westby, P.C., we recognize that the prospect of filing for bankruptcy is overwhelming. For most people, although not desirable, bankruptcy is necessary. Our bankruptcy lawyers can help you determine what form of bankruptcy relief is right for you and can answer your questions along the way. Contact us to discuss your situation with an experienced bankruptcy attorney.

Will I Lose All My Property?

The effect of filing for bankruptcy will depend on the type of bankruptcy. If you file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, your property will not be liquidated or forfeited unless you choose. Rather, your debt is consolidated into a debt repayment plan (and you keep all of your assets and property).

Although a Chapter 7 bankruptcy is commonly referred to as "bankruptcy liquidation," many people are confused about state and federal property exemptions that actually allow debtors to keep a lot of their property, such as:

  • Up to $150,000 equity in your home
  • Most employer-sponsored retirement funds
  • Furniture and other personal property (up to certain limits)
  • A vehicle valued at $5,000
  • Tools of your trade (up to certain limits)

Secured assets, such as a vehicle that is secured by a loan, will more than likely be repossessed unless an agreement is made with the lender. However, for some people, repossession provides relief in that it allows them to relinquish property—and debt—that they could not afford.

Redeem Repossessed Property at Fair Market Value

Most of America has suffered some form of financial loss as a result of the economic downturn. Whether your vehicle lost significant market value once it rolled off the car lot or your home value plummeted along with the rest of the real estate market, the fact remains — you have property that is worth significantly less than you owe. With the help of an experienced bankruptcy attorney, you may be capable of negotiating with the lender to allow you to purchase repossessed property back at its current fair market value.

We Listen. We Care. Trusted Since 1974.

At Platt & Westby, P.C., we listen to our clients and help them find solutions that fit their needs. Whether you are facing home foreclosure, your car was repossessed or you have other financial problems, we can help you achieve the relief you need. Platt & Westby, P.C., has been so trusted by clients over the years that we were recently were voted "Best Bankruptcy Law Firm" for 2013 by clients in Arizona Foothills Magazine. Contact one of our bankruptcy lawyer at our law firm or call 602-277-4441. We proudly serve clients from six office locations in the Phoenix area.

We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy relief under the Bankruptcy Code. No information contained within is meant as legal advice and should be construed as informational only.

If you have a legal question, contact us. We can help.

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